Have you ever read The Recess Queen? When I first saw this book, I was kind of triggered. My very own bully did torture me on the playground and during recess. Now… there is a book to show exactly HOW to handle those bullies and how to connect with them. To help you utilize this great book, we will talk all about the different components that go into this book.
Teacher Lesson Plans
When creating reading lesson plans, it is important to keep several important components in mind. Prior to delving into the text, begin by engaging students with thought provoking before reading questions that will assist in activating prior knowledge and setting a purpose for the reading. During the reading, ensure you are discussing key points by utilizing during reading questions; this will deepen student understanding of the text and increase engagement. After completing the text, set time aside for an after reading sharing activity along with comprehension-based questions to assess student understanding.
Additionally, consider incorporating opportunities for students to connect concepts from the texts to their own emotions and experiences by making SEL connections; this allows learners to construct meaning on a more personal level. Cross curricular ideas allow students to view the world around them through different lenses with multidisciplinary thinking and inquiry-based activities.
A great way to help students make real-world connections is by including information about the author whenever possible. Finally, when constructing lesson plans be sure you have identified measurable outcomes so that you can evaluate student progress and mastery of skills relating to successful comprehension of text.
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Make all 5 components of reading lessons fun and engaging.
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Before Reading Questions
Are you searching for ideas for before reading The Recess Queen? I usually start off with these questions and generate their ideas before we even open the book.
- what do you notice about the cover?
- What is the girl on the cover doing?
- what are the other kids doing?
During Reading Questions for The Recess Queen
During reading, I love to make observations. The students can respond to questions verbally, in turn and talk, and in their journals. Some questions that I use while reading The Recess Queen are:
- What is Jean’s problem in the story?
- How does Katie Sue build a relationship with Jean? (Heyyyy social and emotional learning connection)
- How does Jean change after getting to know Katie Sue?
After Reading Questions
A lot of time, we can have an open conversation in our classroom. We can discuss the ways that The Recess Queen affected us, how we connected on a deeper and more! If we don’t have time to finish the questions, we will add them to our reading response journal. (More on that below). Some questions that I generally ask afterwards would be:
- Grammar Questions
- Text structure question
- Text Connection Question
- Plot Question
- Problem & Solution Questions
One of my favorite things to do each time that I have a lesson is a mini little book talk. It’s a half sheet of paper that I use to include all parts of the reading lesson. Why do I do this? I hate having a hundred papers to sift through when I am teaching. This helps me eliminate spending time over the lesson searching for my place on the plans. Now I can use this mini book talk as a way to keep track of my questions throughout the book.
Anchor charts are a great way to keep track of important information throughout your lessons. Have students create anchor charts with drawings or diagrams to demonstrate what they have learned during class time. You can also use anchor charts as a reference tool throughout the unit so that students can easily review key concepts after each lesson. This can also serve as an informal assessment tool for you as well; if you notice a student struggling with any particular concept, you can provide additional support at that point in time.
For The Recess Queen, we used Main Idea for the topic. However, there are so many different ideas for this book.
TIP for Anchor Charts
Make an anchor chart for your students to add into their notebook. Throughout the year, if they forget how to complete the skill, they can refer back to their notebook.
The Recess Queen student workbook is an excellent way to ensure class work stays organized and intact. The workbooks come equipped with everything a student needs to succeed, from helpful vocabulary to inspiring anchor charts. The workbook puts all of their materials in one place, helping keep their studies tidy without any papers slipping to the wayside or getting lost in desks. The workbook is a great tool for students looking to stay on top of their school work and make everyone’s lives less hectic by having everything that they need right at their fingertips.
Reading Response Questions
The Recess Queen can be used to motivate students to share their understanding of a book by using reader response questions and prompts. Reading activities such as these may seem simple, but they are powerful tools that help build reading comprehension skills, develop critical thinking, and most importantly, they encourage students to read with purpose. The challenge of understanding complex concepts within a story stimulates the minds of students, allowing them to become more aware of the lessons conveyed within and forming meaningful reflections about it.
In the upper elementary classroom, it is a little harder to get all 5 components into your reading block. Most students have mastered phonics and phonemic awareness BUT they are still working on comprehension and vocabulary. A great way to do this is by including writing activities that would encourage your students to think outside of the box.
One of my favorites is relating it to a fairy tale and seeing how the story can relate to a fairy tale.